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 Post subject: Replacing a small grove
PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 9:14 pm 
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Location: St. Louis area Location Details
I'm going to be digging out 2-3 plantings soon and replacing them with other species. I'm hoping that the shoots are different enough that I don't have to worry about getting every single rhizome out, but I'm going to try. With that in mind, does it make any difference if I leave some amount of culm to help me pull rhizomes? When I cut down a small tree or shrub I leave some length of trunk to use as leverage to help get out the rootball, but I don't think that will really help with bamboo. Is it better to just cut all of the culms down to the ground?

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:22 am 
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Location: Carmichael, CA
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Leave some handles!

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 11:06 am 
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Thanks Brad. Is 12" enough? Too much?

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 11:35 am 
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Location: Island off Cape Cod Massacusetts
How much of a handle you leave may depend on how much you can stand leaning over to pull on it. Might depend on thickness of culm too. Gripping a larger culm species would work better than a thin culmed one. Myself, I would not contemplate such work without mechanical advantage from below, in my case, pallet forks and a machine. If no machine, then other leverage from below, lever/fulcrum out of some metal prying device.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:57 pm 
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Alan, I found it helpful to have enough to grab a hold of, mainly it can allow you to carry removed hunks w/o getting as dirty as you would grabbing rootballs. But you'll get dirty anyway. 12" should be plenty. If you leave them a bit longer you could later snip them off and make pan flutes...

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:23 pm 
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I have begun my removal project: three small groves will be removed. Ph. nigra (not hardy enough), Ph. propinqua 'Beijing' (flowering), S. fastuosa 'Viridis' (not hardy enough). And by "I have begun" I mean "I have hired a college-aged neighbor with a love of the gym" to do the work for me. :)

I will be replacing these with Ph. dulcis, Ph. heteroclada, and Ph. makinoi -- all of which have been growing in those raised "boxes" I built. It's going to be fun trying to get those into their new locations. Will probably need to hire some equipment.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:11 am 
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Any chance your 'Beijing' will shoot again Alan? When my flexuosa flowered in the 90's I tossed the tub out only to hear later that it re-sprouted a year or two later. No sign of a single seed on my 'Beijing' so just maybe.

john
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:08 pm 
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It sent up plenty of shoots this year (started flowering last year) but the culms are all curvy and floppy -- not the straight, upright ones I saw before flowering started. I don't really want to wait another few years to see if this recovers, as it looks pretty terrible right now. Maybe I'll pot up a section just in case...

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 18, 2017 12:22 am 
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Location: Amador County, CA on 5 acres with mostly phyllostachys bamboos in zone 7 they say
friends or neighbors with a backhoe? it's a little far to trailer mine there. you can rent a 70 horse backhoe in my neck of the woods for a day for $400. You could clear a huge grove in no time and then dig berms or mounds or a pond or grade a driveway or remove stumps the rest of the day. Even with my little 40 horse backhoe I could clear a huge grove fast. Just a thought, may be worth the money if you don't have any buddies with one.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:20 pm 
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Location: HALIFAX, NS
Alan_L wrote:
Maybe I'll pot up a section just in case...


Good idea! Would be awful to have this important hardy selection to die ouyt when there's a chance it will survive. Mine looks like the culms are made of rubber and the leaves are brownish. I might have a seed or two by no means certain.

john

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:57 pm 
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Location: Island off Cape Cod Massacusetts
Alan_L wrote:
I don't really want to wait another few years to see if this recovers, as it looks pretty terrible right now. Maybe I'll pot up a section just in case...


When P flexiosa flowered, the part that survived afterward were new survival shoots that came up at edges of died off groves. So if you want to try to save any beijing, maybe don't disturb one of the edges of the flowered grove. Potting some old stuff from the middle might not accomplish much, and the first survival shoots were fairly modest, so might not transplant too well, and they did not come up everywhere, so may be hard to find.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:05 pm 
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There's one escaped rhizome that sent up culms this year 12' from the main plant -- none of those flowered (this year). I was planning on saving those, so glad to hear your experience.

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